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"Františka ten zvláštní člověk nezajímá."

Translation:František is not interested in that strange person.

September 29, 2017

33 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/cricketswool

Since člověk is in the nominative while František is in the accusative, shouldn't this instead be translated as "That strange person doesn't interest František"? The meaning is similar but there is a grammatical difference.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VladaFu

That is indeed accepted.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ovenist

The translation reads: "František is not interested in that strange person." but isn't it the other way around? "That strange person is not interested in Frantisek"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kacenka9

That would be

František nezajímá toho zvláštního člověka.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ovenist

Which one would be? As I understand it, "František nezajímá toho zvláštního člověka." means "Frantisek is not interested in that strange person"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kacenka9

No. It means "that strange person is not interested in Frantisek"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ovenist

Ok, so now that this is clear, I don't understand why toho zvlastniho cloveka is accusative if it translates as the subject of the verb.

Is it because the czech structure is closer to "frantisek is not of interest to that strange person"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/svrsheque

zajímá is actually much like "interests":

  • That strange person interests me. the object of my interest is in the nominative and serves as the subject of the verb. "me" is in the remnant of the accusative. Ten zvláštní člověk mě zajímá. is conveniently almost word for word.

we can make "me" the subject. but then we need to either switch to the "be interested" construction or express it differently:

  • I am interested in that strange person. czech does this reversal for this verb (and others) by adding the "se": Zajímám se o toho zvláštního člověka.

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michiel80

why is "se" omitted? I supposed that "to be (not) interested in" is always translated into " (ne)zajímat se o"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ValaCZE

Zajímat and zajímat se are two different verbs. "Zajímat" - means that something interests me (or someone else) and "zajímat se" - means that i am (or somebody else is) interested in something.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vitnim

This is it! The explanation I have been searching for! It finally clicked. Thank you!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnnButler6

Dekuji! I wondered why the correct answer was "zajima" rather than "se zajima" ? Thanks, ValaCZE!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DavidMills574753

I've read all the discussion about this sentence. Having previously studied Latin, I understand the Czech declensions of nouns, nominative, accusative etc, but what I think particularly throws people and made me look twice in this exercise is the word order, i.e. accusative>verb. Can I ask, is there a rule in Czech for situations where the accusative comes before the nominative, or is it just something that is according to the whim of the speaker/writer?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ShehabAshr

Why "Františka" not "František" ? Isn't "František" is the nominative?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ValaCZE

In czech names are declined as well as nouns, pronouns and adjectives.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tafkag

Yes, but isn't Frantisek the nominative in this sentence? He is the one who is interesed in something (the strange person which would be the accusative).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VladaFu

Nope, člověk is in nominative. Literally, but awkward English, it is "That strange man does not interest František." So František is the object and člověk is the subject of the sentence.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EliFure

Is there a rule for which construction is most common? zajimat or zajimat se?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VladaFu

No rule. Both are pretty common.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PritelBobka

I've read the comments below, and I feel this answer needs to be changed.

"To interest" and "To be interested in" are two different verbs. From what I've read, "To interest" is "Zajímat" and "To be interested in" is "Zajímat se," and even though the MEANING may be interchangeable in Czech (just like in English), they should be treated separately in the literal English translation if the focus is on nominative vs. accusative. Otherwise, this is super confusing for learners.

If František is in the accusative (Františka) then he MUST be the recipient of the action in which case the literal translation is, "That strange person does not interest František."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BoneheadBass

"That strange person does not interest František" is among the accepted translations, and your logic is sound.

But I would suggest, as a fellow learner, that, while the whole "X is interested in Y / Y interests X" thing is definitely confusing, the teaching purpose of switching things up may be to demonstrate that there are two ways of making the same point, and they involve different word orders -- just as they do in English.

While I might be curious to know why Option A, rather than Option B, was chosen as a the main translation, It wouldn't prevent me from sooner or letter "getting the message." :-) (As always, just one person's opinion!)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SchaumiFfm

It must be wrong. Other examples show that František is the subject who is interested in sth.: O to se František nezajima = František is not interested in that. František se o ženy nezajímá = František is not interested in women.

But here: Františka ten zvlastni člověk nezajímá = František is not interested in that strange person. -- The only exception would be if the missing reflexive "se" may change the subject to the object.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AgnusOinas

They are just two ways of saying the same thing:

  • František (subject, nominative) se nezajímá o toho člověka (object, locative). = František is not interested in the person.
  • Františka (object, accusative) nezajímá ten člověk (subject, nominative). = The person does not interest František. (not very common in English)

So, yes, the missing "se" changes a lot. It's very important if a verb is reflexive (se, si) or not. Compare:

  • František učí matematiku. = František teaches math.
  • František se učí matematiku. = František studies math.
  • Matěj půjčil peníze (Františkovi). = Matěj lent money (to František).
  • Matěj si půjčil peníze (od Františka). = Matěj borrowed money (from František).

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ShereeWall1

When would you use "clovek" and not "muz"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mason946626

Clovek is gender neutral ("person"), where muz means man. You'd use that whenever the gender of the person is unknown or irrelevant to the conversation, just as you'd use "person" in English.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ShereeWall1

When would you use "Frantiska" for "Frantisek"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ValaCZE

Františka is accusative of František. In czech names we decline names.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mos.Ng

"That strange man does not interest František." why this answer does not accept. " that stranger man " is subject right while Frantisek is Object. please help


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VladaFu

"That strange man does not interest František." is accepted. Please try again.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sylwia473983

Why not this strange person?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VladaFu

ten is that, not this. this is tento


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/snikta

I still don't really understand why the accusative of Frantisek is used ie Frantiska when he is the one who is not interested


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AgnusOinas

Two ways of saying the same thing, in both languages:

  • František (subject) is interested in Matěj. - František (subject) se zajímá o Matěje.
  • Matěj (subject) interests František. - Matěj (subject) zajímá Františka. = Františka zajímá Matěj.

Both Czech and English are able to express the same idea with person A as the subject or person B as the subject. While the second way is not very natural in English, Czech is fine with both ways. Don't be fooled by the word order though.

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